City of Liverpool manager Michael Ellison hails ‘much-needed’ Widnes win after Bootle ‘implosion’

City of Liverpool striker Josh Quarless embraces manager Michael Ellison

City of Liverpool manager Michael Ellison was left relieved after his side returned to winning ways thanks to Josh Quarless’ first-half strike.

The Purps enjoyed two much-improved performances from the draw with Kidsgrove Athletic last week but their derby clash with Bootle ended in disappointment.

Jay Edgar’s penalty gave City of Liverpool the lead before a three-goal flurry from Brian Richardson’s side swung the clash in the Bucks’ favour.

They returned to winning ways in midweek with a valiant performance against Widnes as Quarless returned to the scoresheet after expertly finishing with his left-foot.

“I thought we played well without being outstanding. I don’t think both teams had a fantastic game, I thought it was a typical derby game which I think was pretty close,” Ellison told Off The Park.

“We had a good chance to take the lead then we had to make a change after 15 minutes, a double change by half time then we had to change the whole backbone.

“Credit to Bootle, they’ve got good players and flying at the minute. The referee played a big part in both decisions, I don’t think it was a penalty for us and how he hasn’t give that push is ridiculous.

“They got into it with an equaliser then six minutes left we should see that out so I was disappointed with our defending late on. For 80 minutes it was a pretty even game and a draw would’ve been a fair result but we sort of imploded. 

“It was much needed [win over Widnes] we signed two lads on the day, we lost three on Saturday. Those two lads who come in were fantastic and they made a big difference.

“We changed the shape up a bit and we caused them problems, it was a huge improvement on the last two games.

“First half, we were excellent, played fantastic football and opportunities, only took one and really we should’ve put the game to bed.

“They came out second half and credit to them had a go but thought we dealt with everything had and again had opportunities in the second half to put the game to be. A [more] nervous night than what it needed to be but all in all good performance, massive three points.”

The Purps have been struck with rotten injury luck with as many as seven first-team players injured.

They have added two this week as James Steele and Oliver Kilner made their moves to Ellison’s side.

He added: “How long have you got? Burkey [Nathan Burke], Louis Corrigan, Freddie Potter out for the rest of the season. Louis Isherwood, George Hassle, Ryan Gibson, Jack Hazlehurst out. Hughesy [Adam Hughes] come back for his first game in a month [against Widnes] but needs to get back fit.

“Jack Wall’s out with a hamstring injury, a couple of weeks, T’s [Tinashe Chakwana] out. There’s 10 lads out injured, seven or eight are in the squad, it’s been tough. It seems to be following us round at the minute. 

“Their results have been up and down, they got a good point at Runcorn, Rylands put six past them, Bootle put three past them.

“But if you look they’ve got a good squad there, really experienced, good players. [John] Macken’s there now, he’s had promotion at this level before.

“If you take your eye off the ball, there’s no easy games, turn up every week, give 110 per cent and if you don’t turn up, you lose simple as that. Hopefully, we can put the performance in and get three points.” 

[Featured image: City of Liverpool]

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